Lionel Richie: Teenage Drew Barrymore, Nicole Richie ‘Almost Killed’ Me
A dad’s nightmare. Lionel Richie joked about the trouble Drew Barrymore and daughter Nicole Richie got into as teens — and how he somehow survived.
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“I know Drew is going to bring Nicole [to the concert],” Lionel, 73, told Barrymore, 48, during the Thursday, March 30, episode of The Drew Barrymore Show, while promoting his upcoming tour. “And Nicole and Drew together [are] one big ham sandwich. I don’t even know how I’m going to take that backstage.”
The Never Been Kissed actress proceeded to tell the audience that she’s known Lionel’s oldest daughter, Nicole, 41, “for years” after growing up in Hollywood. (Nicole was adopted by Lionel and his ex-wife Brenda Harvey when she was 9 years old. The “Dancing on the Ceiling” musician also shares son Miles, 28, and daughter Sofia, 24, with ex-wife Diane Alexander.)
“We’re part of this little girl wolf pack,” Barrymore explained on Thursday. “I think Nicole and I have figured out how to have so much fun and then pull it together and be really good moms.”
Lionel quipped: “I don’t even know how that happened. As parents you go, ‘This is going to be a disaster.’ Because Nicole and Paris [Hilton], let’s talk about it, when they started out [were insane].” In the early 2000s, the Simple Life costars made headlines for their wild ways, including Nicole’s stint in rehab and her 2006 DUI.
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The “Hello” crooner revealed on the talk show, “If I can live through that, I can live through anything. Then it became this committee. I call them the bitty committee.”
The American Idol judge confessed he thought there was “no way” Nicole’s crew, including Hilton, 42, and Barrymore could “transcend into a family with husbands and kids.” But now, he admitted, “It turned out perfect.”
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Nicole became a mom in January 2008, welcoming daughter Harlow with Joel Madden. The couple, who tied the knot in December 2010, welcomed their son, Sparrow, in September 2009.
Barrymore, meanwhile, welcomed daughters Olive and Frankie in September 2012 and April 2014, respectively, with now ex-husband Will Kopelman. The pair split in 2016 after four years of marriage. Hilton, for her part, welcomed her first child, son Phoenix, in January after marrying Carter Reum in November 2021.
The Charlie’s Angels actress — who went to rehab at age 13 and revealed in March that she hasn’t “had a drink in almost four years” — agreed with Lionel. “We turned out OK,” Barrymore said on Thursday, revealing, “We got it all out of our systems.”
Lionel, however, remembered the girls’ childhoods as a little more than just teenage fun.
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“Let me give you my side of the story. You all almost killed me. I’m so glad you got it out of your system,” the “All Night Long” singer said. “I almost lost consciousness. Some nights I would get a phone call [from the sheriff saying], ‘We have Nicole here.’ [I’d say], ‘What did she do now?’ [And they replied], ‘She went down the wrong way of the freeway.’”
The Grammy winner laughed, asking Barrymore, “Who is going to pay me back for all that medication I took?”
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Lionel joked that the only way he made it through those crazy years was that he was “somewhere between meditation and medication.”
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